The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) said it has reached Congressionally-mandated 65,000 H-1B visa cap for the fiscal year 2020, after it started receiving the applications for the most sought-after work visa among foreign, including Indian, professionals.
The H-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa that permits US companies to employ foreign laborers in specialty occupations that require hypothetical or specialized ability. The technology companies depend on it to hire tens of thousands of employees each year from countries like India and China.
The USCIS, the government organization ordered with the errand of affirming such applications, on Friday said: “it has received a sufficient number of petitions projected as needed to reach the congressionally-mandated 65,000 H-1B visa regular cap for the fiscal year 2020.”
The fiscal year begins October 1, 2019, and it the USCIS started receiving the visa petitions from April 1. However, the agency did not reveal the number of petitions received by it in the first five days.
The USCIS stated, it will next decide whether it has gotten a sufficient number of petitions to meet the 20,000 H-1B visa the US propelled degree exception, known as the ace’s cap.
The agency said it will reject and return visa charges for all unselected cap-subject petitions that are not restricted to multiple filings. It will continue to accept and process petitions that are otherwise exempt from the cap.
Petitions petitioned for current H-1B workers who have been counted already as a detriment to the cap, and who still retain their cap number, are exempt from the FY 2020 H-1B, the USCIS said.
It did not say if it would resort to the computerized draw of lots as was the case in the last several years.
Last year, the USCIS received 190,000 cap-subjected H-1B petitions. In 2018, it received 199,000 applications while in 2017, 236,000 petitions in the first five days after it started receiving the applications.
The USCIS received 232,972 H-1B cap-subject petitions in 2016 and in 2015, it received 172,581 cap-subjected petitions.
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This is the first season of H-1B petitions after the USCIS announced enforcing new rules for the most looked for after the US work visa applications for remote experts. The new rules give preferences to those who have completed their post-graduation degree course from any US educational institutions.
This year the USCIS has suspended the electronic registration requirement for the fiscal year 2020 cap season to complete user testing and ensure the system and process are fully functional.
Under the new framework, the USCIS first chooses H-1B petitions submitted for the benefit of everything being equal, including those that might be qualified for the propelled degree exception.
From that point, the USCIS will choose from the staying qualified petitions, a number anticipated to achieve the propelled degree exclusion. Changing the request in which the USCIS tallies these portions will probably build the number of petitions for recipients with an ace’s or higher degree from a US foundation of advanced education to be chosen under the H-1B numerical assignments.
The USCIS says that the change will result in an expected increment of up to 16 percent (or 5,340 specialists) in the number of chose petitions for H-1B recipients with a graduate degree or higher from a US organization of advanced education.
“These basic and shrewd changes are a positive advantage for bosses, the remote laborers they try to utilize, and the office’s adjudicators, helping the H-1B visa program work better,” USCIS Director L Francis Cissna had said in an announcement.
“The US managers looking to utilize outside specialists with a US ace’s or higher degree will have a more prominent possibility of determination in the H-1B lottery in long stretches of abundance interest for a new H-1B visa,” Cissna said.
In April 2017, US President Donald Trump, had issued the ‘Purchase American and Hire American Executive Order’, training the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to “propose new guidelines and issue new direction, to supplant or amend past tenets and direction if suitable, to ensure the interests of US laborers in the organization of our movement framework.”
The executive order specifically mentioned the H-1B program and directed the DHS and other agencies to “suggest reforms to help ensure that H-1B visa is awarded to the most-skilled or highest-paid petition beneficiaries.”
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